Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Thu May 24, 2012 3:01 pm

I wrote a PM to Marc Klass on his FB acct as he is a "friend". Here is what I said:

Marc, I am the Founder of Victim's Heartland and am a retired PI. One of my members went on Sierra's Tumblr acct and saw a pic of the man they have in custody. She copied and pasted it to Sierra's thread we have on her case. Now, that particular picture has been taken down. I don't know if you've even looked at her Tumblr acct but it's horrible. How could this man be on her acct if she didn't know him? Here is her Tumblr acct: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

and here is a link to Sierra's page on VH. Go to the last page and read what was found.
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by samgoodwin on Thu May 24, 2012 4:58 pm

It'll be on pg. 3 when he gets here, but he'll probably find it. I think I used the wrong smiley above, I was trying to thank you for contacting Mark.
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Thu May 24, 2012 5:27 pm

Sam, I can't help but giggle. When you write "thank you" the smiley will automatically come up. (I'll try it this way: When you write THANK YOU, the smiley automatically comes up.)

I hope Marc sees my message. I saw on his FB that his father passed away recently so he may not be on for awhile.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Thu May 24, 2012 6:41 pm

Sierra LaMar slaying defendant could face death

Thursday, May 24, 2012

(05-24) 14:48 PDT SAN JOSE -- The former supermarket worker charged with kidnapping and murdering a South Bay girl made his first court appearance Thursday on charges that could bring him the death penalty, but did not enter a plea.

His hands shackled, Antolin Garcia-Torres, 21, of Morgan Hill said nothing and kept his head bowed as he appeared briefly before Judge Jerome Nadler in Santa Clara County Superior Court. Nadler ordered him held without bail and told him to return to the San Jose courtroom next Thursday.

Prosecutors charged Garcia-Torres with murder with the special circumstance of murder in the course of a kidnapping in connection with the presumed slaying of Sierra LaMar, 15, who lived just outside Morgan Hill. Sierra was last seen March 16, and her body has not been found.

The special circumstance allegation means Garcia-Torres could face life in prison without the possibility of parole or the death penalty if he is convicted. District Attorney Jeff Rosen said his office would decide later whether to seek lethal injection.

Rosen said he would "aggressively seek justice."

"We will do everything in our power to seek the truth and to seek justice for Sierra LaMar," Rosen said. "To do this, we must do our work diligently, in our offices, in our crime laboratory and in the courtroom."

Sierra's family did not attend the hearing. Supporters held signs outside the courthouse with the girl's picture and asked, "Where is Sierra?"

Garcia-Torres' family was in court but left without speaking to reporters. The defendant was represented by an attorney from the public defender's office, who did not comment.

Court documents released Thursday shed little new information on the case against Garcia-Torres, a former Safeway employee who authorities say did not know Sierra.

But authorities said they were all but certain Sierra is dead, citing the fact that she has not posted on social media websites since the morning of March 16 and that no one has heard from her.

"Sierra LaMar has no independent means of support," sheriff's Sgt. Herman Leon wrote in a statement outlining the grounds for Garcia-Torres' arrest. "All of her known personal belongings, including her asthma inhaler, her money, her house keys and the clothing she was wearing the morning of her disappearance, have been located."

A tracking dog traced Sierra's scent from her home to a point midway down her street, Leon wrote.

Authorities said Sierra's DNA was found in Garcia-Torres' Volkswagen Jetta and that his DNA was found on clothes belonging to Sierra, which were found near the stop where she would have caught the bus to Sobrato High School in Morgan Hill.

They have not described the DNA evidence, but Sheriff Laurie Smith said the material found on Sierra's clothes was not blood.

Legal analyst Steve Clark, a former prosecutor who now works as a defense attorney, said he was not surprised Rosen had filed a special-circumstance case.

The district attorney would not comment on whether he would consider offering a lighter sentence to Garcia-Torres in exchange for revealing the location of Sierra's body, but Clark said that is always a possibility.

"They're not supposed to use the death penalty as a bargaining chip, but I'm sure they would like to have something that they can approach this defendant with," Clark said.

Finding the girl's body, he said, is "something I'm sure the family would want."

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by samgoodwin on Thu May 24, 2012 7:40 pm

LOL. I saw the thank you pop up after I wrote that, Wrap. Too funny.

So they're confirming now those were the clothes Sierra was wearing. There has to be a place this creep has assaulted women or hidden bodies before. They should search his old home area before he lived in the trailer court.
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by raine1953 on Thu May 24, 2012 8:36 pm

I had never heard of tumblr either.
Nite you are so perceptive! I like your theories. I too saw that pic on the tumblr and sure thought it looked like the suspect. Nite you are so good!
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Thu May 24, 2012 8:45 pm

How far down did you all have to go to see it?

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by samgoodwin on Thu May 24, 2012 10:31 pm

Police have found a body in a trash can... no word yet on whether it's Sierra or not. (You wouldn't think so after all this time, but who knows.)

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by samgoodwin on Thu May 24, 2012 10:37 pm

Possibly not Sierra - not sure yet..
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by samgoodwin on Thu May 24, 2012 10:50 pm

Photos here:
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I kind of doubt it's her, because cops were watching him.
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Praying For Faith on Thu May 24, 2012 10:59 pm

Very good job Nite, looking that Tumbler Account over so thoroughly and remembering every detail. I looked at it earlier and I also remember seeing that picture of Antolin Garcia-Torres.

I am in the dark ages myself. I have never seen Tumbler either.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by NiteSpinR on Fri May 25, 2012 2:08 am

Thank You all for the "Good Job" comments...
Wrap thank you for contacting Marc...
PPF thank you for believing that I'm capable of remembering every detail...(I'm not that good by the way, I take notes!)
And for those of you who saw what I saw... thanks for backing me up.




PS: if you skip down under the reply box you will find an area called OPTIONS just put a check mark in the box that says disable smilies in this post.

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Normal Body Found in Trash Can is Woman, Not Sierra LaMar

Post by raine1953 on Fri May 25, 2012 1:25 pm

A body found stuffed in a trash can Thursday is a woman, but not Sierra LaMar, the 15-year-old missing teen from Morgan Hill.

The Contra Costa Times is reporting that the homicide victim is a woman with long hair and painted nails, and based on decomposition and age, it can't be LaMar, sources said. This shoots down speculation taking place on Thursday that the cases were related.
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Normal 'LaMar Murder Suspect ‘Didn’t Seem Concerned’

Post by Wrapitup on Sat May 26, 2012 2:47 pm

Antolin Garcia Torres seemed unconcerned about authorities following him and interviewing him and his family, his sister said.

By Corinne Speckert Email the author May 25, 2012

While Antolin Garcia-Torres was being interviewed and knew he was being followed in connection with the disappearance of Sierra LaMar, the Morgan Hill resident seemed nonchalant about the investigation and was talking to his older sister, Lucero, about going back to work.

“He didn’t seem concerned, he just continued with his everyday activities,” Lucero Garcia, 26, said.

“He thought it was all a confusion, that’s how he would kind of bring it out. What he was saying was, 'I hope when all this is over I can go back to getting my job' and this and that.”

Authorities put Garcia-Torres under 24-hour surveillance on March 28, the day investigators learned that traces of his DNA were found on the clothing in Sierra’s Juicy-brand bag, discovered in a field two days after her disappearance on March 16.

It’s unknown how long Garcia-Torres knew detectives were following him, or what tipped him off, but the murder suspect apparently knew Big Brother wasn’t far off.

“He knew [he was being followed] and he was just saying, 'Just do what you do every day. Just be normal,’” Alondra Garcia, the suspect’s 20-year-old sister, said. “I was telling him that I was paranoid because I felt like I was being followed because he was being followed.”

Sheriff Sgt. Jose Cardoza said he didn’t know if Garcia-Torres knew he was being trailed, but that it shouldn’t have jeopardized the case in any way.

“I don’t know directly if he knew. He may or may not have known, but that didn’t hinder or stop the investigation or anything the detectives did,” Cardoza said. “It happens, it’s not common [for suspects to find out they’re being followed] but it does happen.”

Detectives also searched the mobile home that Garcia-Torres lives in with his mother, Laura, his wife Francine and 19-month-old daughter Emily. They confiscated Garcia-Torres' toothbrush, boots and blankets, according to Lucero, who said a long braid of her mother’s hair was confiscated as well.

Cardoza confirmed that authorities searched the RV after obtaining a search warrant, although he couldn’t specify the date the search took place, nor could he comment on the confiscated items, aside from the hair.

“In general, when a hair sample is taken from somebody, it would be processed for forensic evidence,” he said. “In criminal investigations, when hair samples are taken it’s to conduct forensic testing."

Lucero also said that sheriff’s personnel interviewed their family at the RV, her apartment and at the sheriff’s station a couple of week’s before Garcia-Torres was arrested. During the interviews, Garcia-Torres was asked about his childhood, where he grew up, what he liked to do and how he was at school, she said.

Despite the interviews, Garcia-Torres continued to act unconcerned. The last time Lucero saw her brother, “He was just saying, ‘oh, I heard that they went over to your place too,’ and I was like ‘yeah, they were asking me a bunch of questions,’ and he was like ‘oh, that’s stupid.’”

It isn't too uncommon to read about murder suspects acting unconcerned. A San Antonio mother was described by police as acting “nonchalant” after stabbing her two infant children to death in 2010. In another case, a New Jersey man charged with murdering his wife in January was described by a family member as acting nonchalant when questioned about the victim’s whereabouts.

In comparison to another high profile case, Casey Anthony, who was accused of murdering her daughter Caylee, acted so nonchalant about her daughter’s disappearance that she reportedly spent some of her child-free days hitting up clubs. However, the Florida jury presiding over the case found Anthony not guilty.

Garcia-Torres is being charged with the murder and kidnapping of Morgan Hill teen Sierra LaMar. The formal reading of the charges has been postponed until 2 p.m., May 31.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Sat May 26, 2012 2:49 pm

Nite said:
And for those of you who saw what I saw... thanks for backing me up.
I have not a doubt in my mind you saw his pic on that horrible Tumblr acct.

No word from Marc Klass to date although I did see him skyped into Nancy Grace's show last night discussing the Celis case.

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Normal Marc Klaas: I'm Not Convinced Sierra's Dead/Klaas says there are too many holes in the Sheriff's argument for him to believe the Morgan Hill teen is 100 percent dead.

Post by Wrapitup on Sat May 26, 2012 5:00 pm

By Corinne Speckert Email the author May 25, 2012

Although authorities are currently treating the disappearance of Morgan Hill teen Sierra LaMar as a kidnapping and murder, KlassKids founder Marc Klaas isn’t convinced the public should be searching for a deceased body.

Klaas said several factors lead him to believe Sierra could be alive: The suspect, Antolin Garcia-Torres, doesn’t have a history of violence against women or children aside from one case that was dropped, a weapon hasn’t been found and a cause of death hasn’t been reported.

Morgan Hill police have evidence positively linking Garcia-Torres to the 2009 assault of a woman in a Safeway parking lot, although official charges have yet to be filed. Morgan Hill Police Sgt. Troy Hoefling said a report is being prepared for the District Attorney to review, and that it will be completed very soon in the near future.

Perhaps the most important reason Klaas can't confidently say Sierra is dead is because the teen's body hasn't be found. The body of a woman with long hair and painted nails was found in a trash can in Pleasanton, Thursday, but detectives haven't confirmed whether it's Sierra.

“Let’s say you have children and you’ve gone through some hideous situation and the police call and say this is the guy who did it. You ask, ‘does he have a murder conviction, or a history of crime against women and children?' They say ‘well, there was one incident but it was dropped.’ You ask, ‘do you have a weapon or a body?’ They say ‘no.’ Then what you're doing is giving me an opinion based on circumstantial evidence that's found,” he said.

However, DNA evidence linking Garcia-Torres to the Sobrato High sophomore makes it difficult to confidently believe Sierra's alive. Plus, the popular cheerleader’s background disqualifies her as a runaway candidate, and why would the Sheriff’s Office say Sierra’s a murder victim unless they’re 100 percent positive?

Then again, the vagueness surrounding the LaMar case, and the hope that's she's alive, prevents many from positively reaching a decision on Sierra’s condition.

“They’ve been vague with telling us what they have. They say they have his DNA on her bag, that they can place her in his car,” Klaas said. “Based on what I’ve heard, they haven’t made the case that this girl is 100 percent dead.”

Although questions surround the LaMar case, authorities can't release specific details because the investigation is ongoing, and are investigating Sierra's disappearance as a homicide based on information that hasn't been released to the public, Sheriff Sgt. Jose Cardoza said.

Klaas can positively say that Garcia-Torres is responsible for Sierra's disappearance, though, and says the identification of a suspect in a stranger abduction is "extremely rare."

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So, he's saying that she knew him? Wonder if he read my PM and checked out our site.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by samgoodwin on Sun May 27, 2012 2:59 pm

I think Mark may be indulging in wishful thinking. LE seems convinced she's dead. Why would Torres's DNA be on her clothes if he hadn't harmed her?

Here's hoping he read your PM and checks it out, Wrap.
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Sun May 27, 2012 3:04 pm

I thought the same thing when I read his thoughts, Sam. But his last sentence really threw me. I would think by now he's read my PM and hopefully has come here as a "guest" to check it out.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by samgoodwin on Sun May 27, 2012 9:51 pm

This is the official charge against Torres - any clue why it says he "was an accomplice in the commission?" Does that mean he helped someone or had help? He's definitely accused of her murder though. (Pic below was sent to me by a friend who got it off SM.)
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Mon May 28, 2012 7:52 am

YES, Sam. That is what it means.

Good catch there, BTW!

There is Much MORE to this than meet the eye. Much More!

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Normal Sierra LaMar death questioned by Marc Klaas: Why he's wrong

Post by raine1953 on Tue May 29, 2012 2:36 pm

Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith thinks the Morgan Hill teen was kidnapped and then murdered by suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres, but Corrine Speckert of the Los Altos Patch says Marc Klaas of the Klaaskids Foundation for Children is not convinced Sierra LaMar is dead at all.

Who's right?

Marc Klaas has had the great misfortune of losing a child due to violent crime, so his comments, which have no official case bearing, should be considered in light of that, as well as his history for advocacy regarding missing children.

His daughter Polly was abducted in 1993, and after her kidnapping and assault at the hands of Richard Allen Davis, her father dealt with it, in part, by helping other missing children and their families.

It is commendable that he is passionate in his efforts for such a cause, and Speckert says Klaas raises three issues to support his inability to believe LaMar is dead, which all three have merit:

No violent history against women or children (except the case that was dropped)
No weapon found
No cause of death reported
On the other hand, Sheriff Laurie Smith and the people tasked with solving the missing Morgan Hill girl's case have had years of extensive law enforcement training and experience to bring to bear in the investigation.

They, along with other agencies assisting them, have worked far more missing person cases and kidnapping and murder crimes than those Klaas has helped with from the outside.

Smith and crime lab technicians have all the case facts, including those that will not be released to Klaas or anyone else in the public or media at this stage in the case. But the public and Klaas don't really need them to figure this case out.

First off, everyone knows that a killer has to start somewhere, right? Ted Bundy had a first kidnapping and a first kill too.

All killers and kidnappers have a first time, a time when they have no record of violence against women or children.

So not having a recorded history of violence against women or children isn't key. In fact, it just shows Torres might not have been caught before because he is too clever, which supports not finding a body disposed of by him.

The fact that DNA evidence found in the suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres' car, however, showed law enforcement without a doubt that the 15-year-old cheerleader had been in the suspect's vehicle.

So police know without a doubt that he was in contact with the young woman physically. They also know that he is not talking to them, which would be the first thing he would do if she were still alive because sentences for kidnapping and rape are much less than sentences for murder of a child.

Criminals always bargain for lesser sentences when possible. Antolin's lawyer would have convinced him of that if he were too dumb to know it. So if Antolin Torres had a live person to give to police he'd be cutting a deal. Even if he had only played a partial role in her abduction, and that was all, he'd be talking about that too.

But Antolin Garcia-Torres isn't talking to police at all. And that says a whole lot.

Marc Klaas, like Sierra LaMar's family and so many others across the country, want to believe that their loved one has not met with the finality of death due to a violent crime.

Heck, Natalee Holloway's mother is still searching for her.

But it does a disservice to the family to give them false hope in a case where law enforcement is adamant death has occurred.

Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office has no reason not to tell the family or the public the truth in this case. But they have every reason not to give the alleged killer and his defense attorney any more ammunition than they have to in a court of law.

So don't look for them to show or talk about their evidence until court time, no matter how much Marc Klaas or the missing girl's family might want them to. Everyone wants to see the prosecutor get a conviction for Sierra's murder more, with or without her body, so they can wait on the evidence that proves she is dead as long as it means getting that conviction.
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Tue May 29, 2012 2:55 pm

So police know without a doubt that he was in contact with the young woman physically. They also know that he is not talking to them, which would be the first thing he would do if she were still alive because sentences for kidnapping and rape are much less than sentences for murder of a child.
I agree. However, that doesn't mean she did not know this idiot prior to her being kidnapped.

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Normal Garcia-Torres set to enter plea in Sierra LaMar case

Post by Wrapitup on Thu May 31, 2012 11:27 am

Posted: 6:52 a.m. Thursday, May 31, 2012

By KTVU.com and wires
SAN JOSE, Calif. — The suspect in the Sierra LaMar case is expected to enter a plea when he returns to court Thursday afternoon.

21-year-old Antolin Garcia-Torres made his first court appearance one week ago. He is charged with murder and kidnapping.

The 21-year-old former Safeway clerk accused of kidnapping and killing LaMar asked the judge for a delay in his arraignment during his first court appearance.

Garcia-Torres, who is facing one count of murder and one count of kidnapping, only appeared for a few moments and his public defender asked Santa Clara Superior Court Judge Jerome Nadler to continue the case for a week.

The judge ordered him to be held without bail.

District Attorney Jeff Rosen said after the hearing that Garcia-Torres is eligible for the death penalty, but that his office hasn't yet decided whether to pursue capital punishment.
"My office and law enforcement, aided by many volunteers in this county, continue to devote all available resources to finding her body," Rosen said of 15-year-old Sierra.
"We hope that will happen soon to give her family some measure of peace," he said.

A probable cause statement from the sheriff's office that was released by the district attorney's office last week provided more details about the morning of Sierra's disappearance.

Sierra woke up at 6 a.m. on March 16 and began getting ready for school. Her mother's boyfriend had left for work, and her mother left a short time later, according to the document.

Sierra posted a photo of herself on a social media website at 7 a.m., and text-messaged a classmate at 7:11 a.m. to make plans to meet at school that day to compare their schoolwork and share makeup, according to the statement.

She typically left home by 7:15 a.m. and caught the bus to school at an unmarked bus stop several blocks from her house at 7:24 a.m., according to the document. However, she never made it to school that day.

Her cellphone was found the next day in a field within a mile of her home, and two days after her disappearance, her black-and-white Juicy-brand purse was found near a shed in a field less than 2 miles from her house. The purse contained schoolbooks, clothing and other items.

DNA collected from the clothing was found to have a "strong association" to that of Antolin Garcia-Torres, who lived 7 miles from Sierra's home, according to the statement.
Sierra's body has yet to be found and there's no murder weapon. Yet the district attorney's office says it has enough evidence to go to trial.

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Normal Jailed suspect in Sierra LaMar disappearance enters no plea in second court appearance

Post by Wrapitup on Thu May 31, 2012 10:03 pm

By Bruce Newman
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Posted: 05/31/2012 02:31:03 PM PDT
Updated: 05/31/2012 06:26:59 PM PDT

Once again, Antolin Garcia Torres, suspected in the disappearance of 15-year-old Sierra LaMar, came before a judge on Thursday but did not enter a plea. He was brought to a basement courtroom in handcuffs, wearing a black jail-issue shirt and red pants. Standing ramrod straight and looking slightly thinner than when he was arrested two weeks ago, Garcia Torres said, "Yes your honor," when Judge Jerome Nadler asked if he understood he was waiving his right to a speedy trial. His next hearing was scheduled for July 10.

The whole thing was over in two minutes.

The brevity of the hearing didn't minimize its importance, however, according to a former assistant district attorney who was in the courtroom. "This was his formal introduction to the public that will make up the jury pool, so it was important that he make a good appearance, and he did that," said Steve Clark, now a criminal attorney. "His lawyer did a good job preparing him."

It was the first gathering of the attorneys -- Ken Mandel from the public defender's office, and assistant DA David Boyd -- who will present the case to a jury. Because Sierra's body has not been found, the outcome of the trial will probably be determined by forensic evidence -- especially DNA. Authorities say they found Garcia Torres' DNA on Sierra's clothing, which was folded in her Juicy-brand bag tossed into a field two miles from her home. The missing teen's DNA was found in Garcia Torres' Volkswagen Jetta, which led to his arrest by sheriff's deputies, with guns drawn, at the Morgan Hill Safeway where he worked as a cashier.

Sierra disappeared March 16 on her way to catch a bus to Sobrato High in Morgan Hill. The case made national headlines and galvanized the Morgan Hill community, where volunteers and sheriff's deputies -- spearheaded by the KlaasKids Foundation -- continued to search this week for her body. Sierra's family continues to hold out hope she will be found alive, while search parties attempt to return her body to the family. They are scheduled to resume the hunt on Saturday.

Sierra's family didn't attend the hearing, but outside the Santa Clara County Hall of Justice, a number of Sierra supporters -- wearing T-shirts bearing her face and the word "MISSING" -- stood vigil. "I want justice for Sierra," said Emma Spencer of San Jose, who said she had searched for the missing teen four times. "The parents aren't here, but we're here as support for them. It's just so sad to see the grief in their faces."

"We're here mostly to provide support for the family," said Elaine Petrakis, whose son went to school with Sierra in Fremont. "Just seeing people out here gives them strength."

Prosecutors had filed a charge of murder against Garcia Torres in his first court appearance a week ago, but Thursday's hearing was his first formal hearing with his new attorney at his side. Following the first court appearance, District Attorney Jeff Rosen said that he won't decide whether to pursue the death penalty against Garcia Torres until his office completes a full review of the evidence.

Garcia Torres was also charged with kidnapping by Morgan Hill police, who say they believe he carried out at least one other attack in the parking lot of the Safeway. They're investigating him as a possible suspect in three unsolved assaults in supermarket parking lots in March 2009. But if he's found innocent of murder, prosecutors won't be able to try him on the kidnapping charge. "The DA's office has pinned its entire case on the murder," Clark said. "It's a risky strategy when the evidence is as complicated as it is in this case."

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Sat Jun 02, 2012 12:36 am

Sierra LaMar Prosecution, Torres Defense to Open Up on Case Details
May 31, 2012 04:10 PM EDT

The Sierra LaMar prosecution and the Antolin Garcia-Torres defense should be expected to both open up soon on case details that have been kept from the public thus far.

That's because the case is now entering into the criminal pre-trial discovery phase, where the suspect's public defender will have access to information prosecutors have regarding case facts, witness statements, police reports and more.

KTVU reports that the suspect is due back in court today to enter a plea in the kidnapping and murder of the victim, a 15-year-old Morgan Hill teen that police believe he happened upon as she waited for her school bus on March 16.

One thing that is bound to come out soon is the facts about the DNA that ties Antolin Garcia-Torres to the crime that makes prosecutors confident Sierra is dead.

DNA on her clothes is most likely to be traces of Torres' semen or blood, since police have stated they did not find any of the victim's blood on her clothing.

Police did not however, say specifically that they had not found Sierra's blood DNA in the suspect's vehicle, which would then help the public to understand why they believe the young woman is dead.

However, forensic analysis is such that even if they only found a hair from her head, if she were already dead when placed in his vehicle, they could determine death had occurred.

Don't look for either party to immediately reveal the DNA details on Thursday, as the prosecution still has some time to respond to the defense's request for that informal discovery information.

But the information about Sierra LaMar's DNA in the suspect's car (and his on her clothes) will be coming out soon, especially if it aids the defense's case in any way to muddy the perception of the public that police arrested his client on flimsy evidence for the kidnapping and murder of Sierra LaMar.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by lisette on Sat Jun 02, 2012 12:41 am

Plea hearing postponed for Sierra murder suspect

The rescheduled arraignment hearing for the Morgan Hill man accused of kidnapping and murdering Sierra LaMar was postponed again Thursday.
The hearing for Antolin Garcia Torres at the Santa Clara County Hall of Justice in San Jose was again rescheduled to July 10, according to district attorney’s media relations coordinator Sean Webby. Garcia Torres has yet to enter a plea.
Garcia Torres is charged with murder, with a special circumstance of kidnapping. A resident of the Maple Leaf RV Park where he lived with his pregnant wife, child and mother, the suspect remains in custody at Santa Clara County Jail on no bail.
Sheriff’s deputies arrested Garcia Torres May 21 for his suspected involvement in the disappearance of Sierra, a 15-year-old cheerleader from north Morgan Hill, by way of Fremont, who has been missing since March 16.
That arrest followed weeks of 24-hour surveillance on the suspect, who drove a red Volkswagen Jetta that authorities linked to the teen’s kidnapping and released photographs of earlier this month.
Investigators and volunteers continue to search for Sierra or her remains, but prosecutors will attempt to convict Garcia Torres even if they do not find a body, authorities have said.
DNA evidence links Garcia Torres to the teen’s disappearance, the sheriff has said. Garcia Torres’ DNA was found on Sierra’s purse and clothing which were found near a shed in a field about two miles from Sierra’s home. Sierra’s DNA was found in Garcia Torres’ car.
The sheriff’s dive team is tentatively planning to conduct another search of Uvas reservoir early next week, according to Sgt. Jose Cardoza.
Garcia Torres’ family have told media people in recent days that the suspect told them, after he learned that detectives were investigating him, that he said he was fishing at Uvas the day Sierra disappeared.
However, Cardoza said he cannot confirm that the decision to return to Uvas, or even to begin searching area waterways as of late March, was related to Garcia Torres’ angling habits.
“It’s an open case, so we can’t comment on anything he has or hasn’t said,” Cardoza said. “We have a suspect in custody, so detectives are working with the D.A.’s office now.”
Authorities began investigating the suspect March 28, and confiscated his car April 7. They also searched his home at least once and confiscated other unidentified items before his arrest.
Volunteers continue searching for Sierra as well. On Wednesday, about 100 volunteers showed up to Burnett Elementary School to assist in the search efforts with KlaasKids Foundation.
Foundation founder Marc Klaas said at a fundraiser at Jason Stephens Winery Friday and repeated Thursday that he thinks it’s possible that Sierra is still alive.
“At the time (of Garcia Torres’ arrest), this guy did not have an extensive arrest record, did not have a known history of violence against women, there’s no murder weapon, no means of murder and body,” Klaas said. “That’s a hard case to make.”
The fundraiser, which featured live bands Suga Dady and James Wesley as well as a silent auction, raised more than $15,000 for the Sierra LaMar Fund, which helps the teen’s family offset expenses associated with the search, Jason Stephens winemaker Jason Goelz said.
About 600 people attended the fundraiser, Goelz added.
Goelz added that a mutual friend of his and Sierra’s family suggested the winery, which has hosted similar concert events in the past, host the fundraiser.
“It was a good opportunity to help the family out and raise awareness,” Goelz said.
Klaas added the fundraiser was “an opportunity for people to let the stress go for a few hours.”

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Normal Sierra LaMar: Divers End Search for Murdered Teen's Body

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:17 pm

By Erin Sherbert Tue., Jun. 5 2012 at 8:45 AM

Santa Clara County divers announced they conducted their final search for 15-year-old Sierra LaMar's body in local reservoirs where sonar had detected irregularities in the waterways.

Monday's search of the Uvas Reservoir was the last one, and future water searches will be based strictly on tips, spokesman Sgt. Jose Cardoza told reporters. To date, divers have scoured more than a dozen reservoirs looking for the girl's body, including Uvas, Chesborough, Coyote, Calero, Almaden, Anderson, and Guadalupe, police said.

"[They've] been searched more than once and there's been over 40 small ponds and lakes in that search as well," Cardoza told CBS.

LaMar was last seen on the morning of March 16 as she was getting ready for school. She sent a final text message to a friend that morning to make plans to meet at school and do homework. However, LaMar never made it to class that day.

Antolin Garcia-Torres, 21, was arrested on May 21 and charged with kidnapping and murdering LaMar after police found traces of the girl's DNA inside his red Jetta. They also found his DNA on her clothing that was found on the side of the road a few days after she went missing. Garcia-Torres, who lives seven miles from the girl, says he never met LaMar before, and police believe that part to be true. Police say it was a random abduction and that LaMar and the suspect did not know each other.

Garcia-Torres' mother confirmed to authorities that her son went fishing the same day the Morgan Hill teen disappeared.

"There has been some information out there as far as Garcia-Torres' hobbies or activities and fishing. We just can't comment on that one way or another," Cardoza said. "The case does remain open; we're still focused and targeted on finding Sierra and locating her."

Garcia-Torres, who has not yet entered a plea, is expected to be back in court on July 10th.

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Normal Gilroy Child 'Annoyance' Cases Raising Possible Link to LaMar Murder

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jun 07, 2012 2:06 pm

A suspect who police say attempted to lure four children into his vehicle on July 26 and August 3 has been identified. But Gilroy police won't say whether the suspect is Antolin Garcia-Torres, accused in the Sierra LaMar murder-kidnapping.
By Corinne Speckert
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Gilroy police have identified a suspect they believe was involved in four child annoyance incidents between July 26 and August 3 in Gilroy, and are preparing two investigations for district attorney’s office review.

The cases involved the pestering or annoying of four children — three girls and one boy — between 9 and 15 years old.

Gilroy police previously referred to the cases as attempted kidnappings, but are now classifying them "annoyances" under California Penal Code 647.6, according to Gilroy Police Sgt. Chad Gallacinao.

A reader emailed Patch asking about any possible link between the Gilroy incidents and Antolin Garcia-Torres, who authorities believe is responsible for the kidnapping and presumed murder of 15-year-old Sierra LaMar.

Patch followed up with Gallacinao who stated in an email that police were “reviewing investigations to determine if (Garcia-Torres) was involved."

Patch also learned that police had identified a suspect in connection with the child annoyance cases, but Gallacinao could not legally comment on whether Garcia-Torres is the identified suspect.

“I am not releasing any information regarding Mr. Torres," Gallacinao said. "It’s not to say that in the future I won’t release information, but at this time I’m unable to."

Authorities can’t release suspect information unless a formal charge has been filed by the district attorney's office or an arrest has been made, but may make exceptions when factors like public safety are concerned. In the case of the July 26 and August 3 incidents, Gallacinao said an arrest has not been made.

“In regards to Mr. Torres specifically, there’s no public safety issue because he’s in custody,” Gallacinao said.

On Wednesday, Patch attempted to contact Ken Mandel, Garcia-Torres' public defender, but he could not be reached for comment.

The suspect in the August 4 incident was described as a 20 to 25-year-old Hispanic male between 5 feet eight inches and 5 feet nine inches tall and weighing about 160 pounds. In the July 26 incident, the suspect was described as a Hispanic male about age 30 with short balding hair or a possible crewcut.

In an attempt to gather information on the two investigations, police interviewed the victims and witnesses in the fall, released a sketch of the suspect to the public and information about the car he reportedly drove.

Although these efforts generated tips, "investigative leads became stale and we weren't able to investigate any further,” Gallacinao said of the previous probes.

But recent information ultimately led police to identify a suspect. “New information did present itself and we did conduct more followup on it, and right now we will be submitting a case to the district attorney’s office for review regarding those incidents,” he said.

Gallacinao said police have re-interviewed the victims and witnesses since the new leads came in. He said suspect information will be released if the district attorney's office decides there’s enough evidence to file a formal complaint with the court.

The cases will be classified as "annoyances" because they lack evidence to substantiate attempted kidnapping charges. For an attempted kidnapping charge to be made, Gallacinao said some kind of illegal movement of the victim has to take place through intimidation or physical force.

“There’s no force, there’s no threat and there’s definitely no movement that the suspect ever had control or moved the child from one way or another,” Gallacinao said. “However, there was evidence that the annoyance of a child did occur. That’s what’s being investigated and that’s what will be reviewed by the district attorney’s office.”

Child annoyance under California Penal Code 647.6 is typically classified as a misdemeanor, punishable by a $5,000 fine and/or jail time. But the charge could become a felony, depending on the suspect’s criminal history. A child annoyance does not necessarily imply sexual abuse or pedophilia.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Fri Jun 08, 2012 11:37 am

Suspect in Sierra LaMar case to get a new attorney

By Mark Gomez
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Posted: 06/07/2012 09:58:40 AM PDT
Updated: 06/07/2012 10:01:07 PM PDT

Antolin Garcia Torres, the man accused of kidnapping and killing Sierra LaMar, is getting a new attorney.
The Santa Clara County Public Defender's Office has bowed out of the case, citing a conflict. Garcia Torres had been represented by Ken Mandel, a veteran public defender.

Garcia Torres will now be represented by someone from the alternate defenders office, which handles cases when the public defender has a conflict.
Mandel was not in court Thursday morning when Judge Jerome Nadler signed off on the change of attorneys. A court document Mandel filed did not specify the nature of the conflict.

Garcia Torres' next court appearance has been pushed back from July 10 to July 31. He is being held without bail at the Santa Clara County main jail.
Garcia Torres' father is currently being prosecuted on charges that he sexually abused a relative.

Sierra, a 15-year-old Morgan Hill area girl, has been missing since March 16. Authorities have said her DNA was found in Garcia Torres' Volkswagen Jetta.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Fri Jun 08, 2012 12:08 pm

Sierra LaMar Suspect Tied to Other Cases, Lawyer Drops Him
June 08, 2012 12:31 AM EDT

The suspect in the abduction/murder of Sierra LaMar is facing some bumps in the road as it appears that his attorney is out of the loop. The lawyer dropped Antolin Garcia-Torres as a client due to "conflicts of interest," but not much else is being released on the matter. It's curious to see what will happen next with Garcia-Torres, who is still being uncooperative with the prosecution.

Garcia's next court date has been delayed due to the loss of his attorney, which is probably a good thing. With the delayed court date that gives more time to gather more evidence and to possibly, hopefully, locate the remains of missing cheerleader Sierra LaMar.

Currently police are investigating some strange "child annoyance" cases out of Gilroy, which is just a hop, skip and a jump from Morgan Hill. In case you don't remember, police expanded their search for Sierra to Gilroy and other regions, which are known to be areas high on the radar with drug cartels. In these "child annoyance" cases, children were allegedly lured by a man who matches the description of Antolin Garcia-Torres, but thankfully none of them were harmed.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:38 pm

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by lisette on Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:58 pm

I think the sketch is a definite likeness of Garcia-Torres. What a scumbag he is!
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Normal Sierra LaMar reward increased to $35,000

Post by Wrapitup on Wed Jun 13, 2012 6:15 pm

Henry K. Lee
Wednesday, June 13, 2012

(06-13) 09:55 PDT MORGAN HILL -- The family of a South Bay teenager presumed slain at the hands of an alleged kidnapper announced a $35,000 reward Wednesday for tips leading to her whereabouts or to a conviction in the case.

Steve LaMar, the father of 15-year-old Sierra LaMar, said he hoped the reward - up from an earlier offer of $25,000 - would "motivate someone who's been reluctant to come forward."

"We really want Sierra back home with us," he said at a news conference in Morgan Hill. "We want them to find it in their heart. If it was their daughter or sister that was missing, we'd do that for them."

He was joined by his daughter Danielle LaMar, search volunteers and crime-victim advocate Marc Klaas at Burnett Elementary School as he asked for the public's help.

The announcement came before a scheduled search Wednesday by volunteers for any signs of Sierra, who was last seen March 16 in her home in an unincorporated area near Morgan Hill. Authorities say she was kidnapped and killed by Antolin Garcia-Torres, 21, of Morgan Hill.

LaMar held up a flier that now describes Sierra as "abducted," replacing those that had said, "Endangered - missing."

The fliers include a picture of Garcia-Torres' red-and-black Volkswagen Jetta, the car authorities believe he was driving when he allegedly saw Sierra near her home, kidnapped her and killed her.

Last week, the Santa Clara County sheriff's dive team scoured Uvas Reservoir in Morgan Hill during its last scheduled water search for Sierra's body or other evidence. The dive team won't be deployed again unless investigators receive new tips, said sheriff's Sgt. Jose Cardoza.

Investigators followed Garcia-Torres for weeks before arresting him May 21, hoping he would lead them to Sierra's body. He has been charged with murder with the special circumstance of murder in the course of a kidnapping, which could lead to life in prison without the possibility of parole or the death penalty if he is convicted.

Garcia-Torres, who is being held without bail, has not entered a plea and will return to Superior Court on July 31.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by raine1953 on Tue Jun 19, 2012 2:04 pm

Sheriff's Office: Hacker created fake Sierra LaMar posting

A Monday night Facebook posting in which missing teen Sierra LaMar purportedly pleads for a rescuer was the creation of a prankster who hacked into her account, the Santa Clara Sheriff's Office said.
In the post, a Saratoga address is given, along with the message "please call the police he's coming back."
Investigators confirmed the address is real, but that the rest of the entry is a hoax.
The fakery is the latest instance of someone infiltrating social media and purporting to be the 15-year-old. In the days after her March 16 disappearance from her Morgan Hill-area neighborhood, hackers posted messages from her Twitter account.
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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jun 19, 2012 7:53 pm

I have to wonder if this hacker also hacked her Tumblr acct.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Wed Jun 20, 2012 9:56 pm

Sierra LaMar: Who Hoaxed Her Facebook?
by Chelsea Hoffman
June 20, 2012 01:15 PM EDT

While Sierra LaMar remains missing there are pranksters who take things entirely too far -- if they're really pranksters in the first place. One must take into consideration that anything is possible with this confusing high-profile case and just because one man is behind bars doesn't mean others won't soon follow. It was asked in an earlier article if the people responsible for hacking Sierra's social networking sites deserved to be punished criminally, and now there's an answer for that. Yes.

First of all, this latest report from the Santa Clara Sheriff's Office indicates that authorities are in fact seeking out the suspects responsible for the Facebook post hoax that went viral this week. The sheriff's office claims that the suspects literally hacked into the Facebook account owned by Sierra LaMar and then posted the hoaxed comments.

However, one individual says this isn't true. A strange series of messages appeared on Twitter this morning by a guy from a pro-Antolin Garcia-Torres forum. This screenshot [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
shows the exchange of vulgarity-laced messages from someone who claims to be part of what happened on Sierra's Facebook page (and possibly even her Twitter account from earlier in the search). The person goes on a profane rant claiming that the cops shut down the page, while claiming that they never hacked it in the first place. All of his tweets have since been removed (how typical).

"We didn't hack her we just made a facebook account," read one of the tweets.

So that indicates there is more than one person doing this. If this person is being serious then he's an idiot for being so open about it. His profiles have been reported to the Santa Clara Sheriff's Office where they can figure out the facts of the matter. If this guy is not one of those responsible, it seems unlikely that he'd so rabidly insist he was while trying to defend that he didn't actually "hack" anything. Seems strange, and hopefully the authorities can get to the bottom of it.

In the meantime, the search for 15-year-old Sierra LaMar is going to continue with high-tech SONAR equipment in Morgan Hill. Hopefully more evidence is found so this chapter of the case can be closed for good.

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Normal High-Tech Task Force to Investigate Sierra LaMar Facebook Posts/Detectives will be working with the Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team Task Force, which deals with high-tech crimes, to find the individuals responsible for the fraudulent posts.

Post by Wrapitup on Fri Jun 22, 2012 9:49 pm

By Corinne Speckert

The Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office is enlisting the help of a special task force dealing with high-tech crimes to find the individuals responsible for the two posts believed to be sent from Morgan Hill teen Sierra LaMar’s Facebook account late Monday night and early Tuesday morning.

Detectives reached out to the Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team Task Force (REACT) Tuesday morning because they’re tired of people interfering with the investigation by posting messages claiming to be from the missing teen. LaMar has been missing for over three months and detectives believe she was kidnapped by Antolin Garcia-Torres, who is currently being tried for her murder.

“Our detectives reached out to them primarily because this is enough already with these hackers and these persons doing these online hoaxes,” Sheriff's spokesman Sgt. Jose Cardoza said. “It’s happened a number of times and we really want to prevent this activity from happening again.”

Cardoza said LaMar’s social media accounts were being hacked “at least once or twice a week during the first month” of her disappearance. Although the rate of recurrence has declined, fraudulent posts continue to happen, as exemplified in Monday’s and Tuesday’s Facebook posts.

Monday’s post depicts an Instagram photo from a Facebook user with LaMar’s name and photo stating, “please call the police he’s coming back," along with an address for a home in Saratoga. In Tuesday’s photo the user identifies a man as her captor and requests that "someone call Breanna please" and continues to read "please someone call I have to go before he gets back..omg please."

Detectives don’t know if the two recent incidents are connected, who the involved individuals are or whether LaMar’s account was hacked or cloned.

“It is a possibility that there was a cloned account created, but it’s something the task force will look into,” Cardoza said.

The district attorney’s office, which oversees the task force, confirmed that REACT members are investigating the posts, but didn’t have any specific details available as of Tuesday afternoon.

Cardoza said the goal is to locate the person or persons responsible for the two Facebook posts so they can file the appropriate cases with the district attorney’s office.

Impersonating someone through a social media website is a misdemeanor under California penal code 528.5. General misdemeanors usually carry a punishment of no more than six months in jail or a fine of one thousand dollars, but Cardoza said he doesn’t know if the incidents would qualify as a general misdemeanor.

Detectives have followed-up on every incident involving online impersonators in the LaMar case, and have yet to identify any suspects. The investigations, including the April 19 hacking of LaMar’s Twitter account, remain ongoing, Cardoza said.

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I hope Marc Klass turns them on to her Tumblr acct if he has not done so already.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Mon Jun 25, 2012 5:43 am

by Chelsea Hoffman

Sierra LaMar update: Documents Released, Searches Continue
June 25, 2012 01:00 AM EDT

Sierra LaMar is still missing, but the founder of KlaasKids is taking it upon himself to keep people updated on the search for the missing Morgan Hill cheerleader. Marc Klaas joined the Patch website so as to have a blogging platform for those who are interested in finding this young woman. What's more, the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department have released many of the files regarding the arrest of Antolin Garcia-Torres, the only known suspect in the disappearance of the missing teen.

For information about KlaasKids involvement in this case, click here. You can stay up-to-date on all of the volunteer searches for Sierra LaMar via the "local voices" Patch team. This man has been through hell and back, and has done a great deal as an advocate for families of missing children and adults. So following his updates on the case is probably necessary if you want all of the facts as they're known.

Aside from the latest update, the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office officials have released documents regarding the investigation of the Morgan Hill teen's disappearance, complete with arrest information and "statements of facts." What's most interesting about the documents within this release is that the discoveries of evidence differs slightly from media reports. It was earlier reported that the bag and clothing belonging to Sierra were found in a field, but the fact of the matter is different. Sierra's belongings, along with DNA belonging to both her and Antolin Garcia-Torres, in an abandoned shed. That sheds more light on the possibilities of what happened to the young woman.

Also, there are tons of things flying around online regarding this suspect while the searches for Sierra continue. The hacker known as "Mikhail" or "Malcom" or "Michael" (he has many aliases) is continuing his cyber attacks and hoaxes on the young girl's profile. He keeps mentioning the name "Cunningham" in his posts, saying that this "Cunningham" knows where Sierra is. This is 100 percent speculation, but has anyone considered searching the Lake Cunningham area in San Jose? According to Antolin Garcia-Torres's Myspace profile, he rather enjoyed this area. In fact, he has pictures of the area here. Maybe it's a clue, even if it's a far stretch.

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If more documents have been released, would love to see them. And, Chelsea Could be on to something. Has she considered speaking to either LE, Marc Klass or both?

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jun 26, 2012 12:18 pm

Address Linked to LaMar Facebook Hoax Doesn't Exist.

When Sheriff's patrol deputies went to the Saratoga house mentioned in a fraudulent Sierra LaMar Facebook post, they discovered the address didn't correspond to any residences.
By Michelle Fitzsimmons Email the author June 25, 2012

A house in Saratoga mentioned in a posting on missing Morgan Hill teen Sierra LaMar's hacked Facebook account doesn't exist, according to Sgt. Jose Cardoza of the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office.

"The street name does exist, however the street digits didn't correspond [to any house there]," he said.

Cardoza said Sheriff's patrol deputies went to look for the address the night of June 18, the same evening the post was made. They canvassed the neighborhood, asking residents if they knew anything about the posting or had information related to the 15-year-old's whereabouts.

"No one knew anything about Sierra or had any information related to the postings," Cardoza said.

LaMar was last seen the morning of March 16. Antolin Garcia-Torres, 21, of Morgan Hill is awaiting trial on charges he kidnapped and murdered her.

Two postings were made the night of June 18 and early the morning of June 19 from what investigators believe is LaMar's hacked Facebook account.

The first shows an Instagram photo from a user with LaMar's name and her photo stating, “please call the police he’s coming back," along with the address for a Saratoga home.

In June 19's photo, the user identifies a man as her captor and asks that "someone call Breanna please." It continues to read "please someone call I have to go before he gets back..omg please."

The first post describes the house has having a red door, a detail deputies didn't find on any of the street's residences, Cardoza said.

The Sheriff's Office has enlisted the help of the Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team Task Force (REACT) to locate the person or persons who hacked LaMar's account and made the postings.

"REACT is investigating the incident and following up to identify the suspects in these latest hacking incidents," Cardoza said.

Sean Webby, media coordinator for the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office, said that the task force is looking into any and all possible leads.

As the investigation mounts, he said he anticipates few details gathered about the identity of the perpetrator or perpetrators, including their age and geographic location, will be released.

"My opinion is that the first time you hear about that information is if and when we file any charges," he said.

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Normal Father of Sierra LaMar Murder Suspect Faces Sexual Assault Charges/ Genaro Garcia Fernandez, 51, was ordered to stand trial on charges he molested his daughter for 9 years.

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 12, 2012 6:16 pm

By Rachel Stern

The father of Antolin Garcia-Torres, the man charged in the disappearance of Sierra LaMar, has been ordered to stand trial for multiple sexual assault charges.

A judge has ordered Genaro Garcia Fernandez, 51, to go on trial on charges that he molested his daughter for nine years, an investigator with the Santa Clara County Sexual Crimes Unit told KCBS.

Fernandez was taken into custody last July after his daughter stepped forward, alleging he had molested her numerous times, beginning when she was five years old in 1990.

The young woman said that the molestations continued until she was 14 years old.

Her brother, Antolin Garcia-Torres, was charged last month for the murder and killing of Sierra LaMar, 15, following her disappearance on March 16.

Despite multiple search efforts, LaMar’s body has not been found.

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The apple sure doesn't fall far from the tree!

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Normal Sierra LaMar Suspect Comes from a Winning Family

Post by raine1953 on Sun Jul 15, 2012 5:53 pm

The suspect in the Sierra LaMar disappearance, and presumed murder, apparently didn't fall from the psychopath tree. The father of suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres is accused of molesting his own daughter -- the young lady who has defended AGT, calling him a "nice guy," among other things. It appears that this family is just a mess and the testimony of who's a "nice guy" from these people should be taken with a big grain of salt. Take into consideration that AGT himself has been in trouble for diddling underage girls as well, although he somehow got out of trouble by marrying the child he knocked up -- oh goodie, so his "winning" bloodline gets to continue!

The sister of Antolin Garcia-Torres (AGT) claims that their father began molesting her when she was as young as 5 years old and lasted until she was 14 years old. Apparently that's the cutoff age for sickos like Genaro Garcia Fernandez, but not for his son who is accused of abducting and murdering 15-year-old Sierra LaMar.

It just seems that this entire family is a mess, and the young women who have encountered the men of this brood are victimized. Maybe it's time for the sister to stop defending her brother and come clean if she happens to know anything -- say about his behavior over the past two years while out-and-about. Regardless of what facts the family doesn't know, they had to have noticed at least something over the course of this young man being potentially tied to several attempted attacks in Morgan Hill and surrounding areas.

As for Antolin's case, his lawyer had to step down because he's representing his father as well, which creates a conflict of interest. Yeah, it seems that having family reunions in jail might just be the way of this family, because AGT is expected to enter a plea at the end of this month regarding his role in the disappearance of Sierra. Hopefully he plays his cards wisely because he's facing the death penalty or mandatory life in prison. Here's to hoping him and his father get to spend lots of time together now!
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Normal Four months: Still no Sierra/Authorities remain hopeful; thousands of hours spent searching for missing teen

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 19, 2012 11:02 pm

Posted on July 17, 2012
by Michael Moore

Four months after Sierra LaMar disappeared outside her north Morgan Hill home, authorities and searchers remain hopeful they will find the missing teen.
Although the number of searchers who volunteer for the effort every Wednesday and Saturday has dropped significantly since the early weeks of the case, Marc Klaas of the KlaasKids Foundation said at least 70 people continue to show up for each scheduled search session. The search center at Burnett Elementary School continues to be well stocked with donated food, water and resources from the community, he added.
Klaas noted that the body of Michelle Le, 26, a Hayward nursing student who went missing in May 2011, was almost exactly four months after her disappearance.
“And there are missing children that have never been found, but we are not discouraged,” Klaas said. “We still have hope we’ll locate her, and possibly even alive.”
The KlaasKids Foundation has provided search-and-rescue services to Sierra’s family since a couple weeks after her disappearance March 16.
Authorities think Sierra, a 15-year-old Sobrato High School sophomore, is dead. In May authorities charged Antolin Garcia Torres, 21 of Morgan Hill, with the crime of murdering her, with a special circumstance of kidnapping.
Sierra was kidnapped March 16 while walking to her school bus stop near the intersection of Palm and Dougherty avenues, authorities have said.
The Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office, which has led the investigation, does not have any planned search efforts coming up, according to Sgt. Cardoza. While in the first two months of Sierra’s disappearance sheriff’s investigators scoured earth and water for any sign of the teen’s whereabouts, in early June they scaled the efforts back to respond only to new tips and leads.
Cardoza added the sheriff’s dive team, which has searched numerous South County waterways - some multiple times - remains “on standby” to respond to such information as it is available.
During about the first month of the investigation, from March 16 to April 15, the sheriff’s office spent about $346,236 on about 4,500 overtime hours for personnel within the agency, Cardoza said.
Costs for personnel and overtime for the remainder of the investigation to date are not yet available, he said.
He added that sheriff’s search-and-rescue volunteers, who are sworn but not paid, have spent a total of 3,776 hours on the search effort. That number includes hours from outside agencies, and includes the entire investigation period up until last week.
Also, 21 outside agencies, including local and federal jurisdictions, have worked 1,205 hours on the investigation, and that number is also current to last week, Cardoza said.
Volunteers who want to help search for Sierra Wednesday or Saturday can do so by showing up to Burnett Elementary School, 85 Tilton Ave., from 8 to 10 a.m. each day.
Anyone with information on the case can contact Santa Clara County Communications at 299-2311, or send an e-mail to [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.].
During normal business hours callers can call Sheriff’s Investigators at 808-4500 or the anonymous tip line at 808-4431.
Information or tips can also be sent via the Sheriff’s Office website at sccgov.org/portal/site/sheriff. Information can also be submitted by text at 421-6760.

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I don't put anything past this guy or his family. I would not be surprised if they were involved in sex trafficking.

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Normal UPDATE: Sierra LaMar Murder Suspect Waives Appearance, Plea Delayed Until Aug. 29/Antolin Garcia-Torres' defense attorney subpoenaed unknown cell phone records, which are under seal.

Post by Wrapitup on Wed Aug 01, 2012 6:23 am

By Sheila Sanchez Email the author July 31, 2012

Sierra LaMar murder and kidnapping suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres waived his right to appear in court today. Instead, attorneys representing the suspect asked that his plea hearing be postponed yet again as they subpoena cell phone records now under seal.

During a court hearing Tuesday morning in Department 23 of the San Jose Hall of Justice, Judge Jerome Nadler set the case's next hearing for August 29 at 2 p.m. for a possible plea entering, and for a so-called subpoena duces tecum hearing, or the production of evidence.

The brief proceeding, heavily attended by media and families and supporters of Sierra LaMar's family, lasted only a few minutes. Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney David Boyd declined to speak to reporters as he walked out of the courtroom.

Garcia-Torres is facing a charge of murder with the special circumstance of kidnapping. Authorities believe the 21-year-old Morgan Hill resident kidnapped and murdered local teenager Sierra LaMar, 15, who was last seen the morning of March 16.

Criminal attorney and legal analyst Steven Clark, present during the proceeding, explained that the defense has subpoeaned Verizon cell phone records from the court, and that the prosecution wasn't made aware of that request, as required.

Boyd objected to their release. The matter could be heard during the next court date, Clark said, adding that the prosecution will now review those records.

When asked about the continuing plea delay, Clark said there's a mountain of evidence to go over, not just about Garcia-Torres, but about the way the investigation was conducted, and attorneys need time to review those documents.

The plea triggers many timelines in the case, Clark said, and the defense wants to keep that in information in their pocket until they need it. He felt that was the reason a plea was not entered on Tuesday.

Clark feels the defense's maneuver not to bring Garcia-Torres into the courtroom is an interesting turn in the case. "That suggests they're satisfied with his presentation at the last court date. Knowing that this is heavily covered, they don't want additional video of their client presented."

Regarding the length of time the defense can exercise without entering a plea, Clark said the judge will give Garcia-Torres' attorneys a lot of latitude in the case. "There's a recognition that this is a huge investigation that is continuing, is very fluid," he said. "The judge will give them all the time they need."

The Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office filed a criminal complaint against Garcia-Torres based on circumstantial evidence and DNA traces found on the victim’s clothing and in the suspect’s red, Volkswagen Jetta.

Santa Clara County Deputy Alternate Public Defender Traci Owens was assigned to represent Garcia-Torres after the suspect’s previous defense attorney, Ken Mandel, declared a conflict of interest and asked to be removed the case. Due to the change in defense attorneys, the judge will also allow time for Garcia-Torres' new legal counsel to properly prepare for the case. "I wouldn't be surprised to see this delayed again [on Aug. 29]," Clark said.

Garcia-Torres appeared in court on May 31. Instead of entering a plea on the charge of murder with the special circumstance of kidnapping, he waived his arraignment and, subsequently, his right to a speedy trial.

Meanwhile, dozens of Sierra LaMar searchers attended the hearing, many wearing T-shirts with a black-and-white photo of the missing teen, the words "Keep Hope Alive" emblazoned on them.

Debbie Nunes said she lives close to Marlene LaMar's home in Morgan Hill and has been faithfully participating in searches for the missing teen along with about 70 volunteers, the number's dwindling from a high of 800 searchers when the teen was first reported missing in March.

"I'm here to support the family. I'll continue to search and come out to all the court dates," Nunes said. "I have children. I'm a mother and every day we drive by the bus stop where she was supposed to be that morning."

Similarly, Kelly Bessette said as a mother she felt a need to show support and provide continued prayers for Sierra's return.

Attending the hearing Tuesday was Garcia-Torres' mother and two sisters, who declined to speak to reporters. Sierra's mother Marlene did not attend the hearing, as she was away with daughter Danielle on a family trip, according to a close friend.

Sierra's father Steve LaMar, who lives in Fremont, was also not present during the hearing.

Regina DiMaggio, another friend of the LaMar family, said she's been offering support through a ribbon tribute program to help families facing loss of their loved ones through tragic cases such as murders and disappereances.

She said she began her project with the Laci Peterson murder in 2002.

"We decided as a family to help them [Laci's family] by offering a ribbon tribute that went nationwide over 50 states ... that was a small way of support for families with missing children... "

After the tribute, families contacted DiMaggio online and asked her to do this for them to help them keep their hope alive. "It's a way to show support while they're waiting for their loved one to come home," DiMaggio said.

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Normal Sierra's suspect scheduled to plea Wednesday

Post by Wrapitup on Mon Aug 27, 2012 11:01 pm

Posted: Monday, August 27, 2012 7:16 pm
by Michael Moore

Antolin Garcia Torres, the Morgan Hill man accused of murdering missing cheerleader Sierra LaMar, will appear in court Wednesday for a plea hearing.
Garcia Torres, 21, will appear at the Santa Clara County Hall of Justice in San Jose at 2 p.m. He is charged with murder, with a special circumstance of kidnapping.
The suspect waived his right to appear at his last hearing July 31.
Sierra has been missing from her mother’s north Morgan Hill home since March 16. Santa Clara County sheriff’s investigators think she was kidnapped that morning while walking to her school bus stop near the intersection of Palm and Dougherty avenues.
Sierra, 15, was a sophomore at Sobrato High School at the time of her disappearance. She moved to Morgan Hill from Fremont with her mother and mother’s boyfriend about six months before she disappeared.
Garcia Torres was arrested May 21 for his alleged involvement in the crime.
Authorities have not found Sierra or her remains, but the district attorney thinks she is dead based on her lack of contact with anyone since her disappearance, and the fact that she has no means of independent financial support.
Sierra’s family and volunteers from the KlaasKids Foundation continue to search for her every Wednesday and Saturday. However, no searches are scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 1, due to the Labor Day holiday, according to Sierra’s family.
Earlier this month, search coordinators, including KlaasKids founder Marc Klaas, reported a frustrating leveling off in search progress, and they need more information from investigators in order to potentially shift their tactics.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by Wrapitup on Wed Aug 29, 2012 6:17 pm

Suspect in Sierra LaMar Case Not in Court, Attorney Asks for More Time to Review Case

Posted: Aug 29, 2012 5:23 PM CDT
Updated: Aug 29, 2012 5:23 PM CDT
By Tom Jones

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Antolin Garcia-Torres, the man authorities say they believe is responsible for Sierra LaMar's disappearance, was set to make an appearance in court today but did not.

Garcia-Torres' attorney asked the Santa Clara County Judge for the hearing to be continued.

The Santa Clara County Court Clerk's office says the Defense asked for more time to review evidence they received from the Prosecution in a discovery motion.

Antolin Garcia-Torres will be in court again on September 26th and has yet to enter a plea to the charges he faces.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

Post by lisette on Fri Aug 31, 2012 6:34 pm

Vigil Wednesday night for missing teen Sierra LaMar

Volunteers as well as friends and family of Sierra LaMar will have a vigil at City Hall Wednesday to raise funds for the ongoing efforts to find the missing teen, and to bring awareness to her disappearance which is approaching the six-month mark.
The “Light the Night” vigil will begin at about 8 p.m. at Morgan Hill City Hall, 17555 Peak Ave. The public is invited.
Volunteers at the Sierra Search Center at Burnett Elementary School, 85 Tilton Ave., will be selling LED votives for $5 each at the school all day Wednesday, where search efforts coordinated by the KlaasKids Foundation will take place throughout the day.
Participants are encouraged to wear glow-in-the-dark bracelets which will also be available at the school. Posters, T-shirts and “anything else to show your support” are also encouraged, organizer Jennifer Koziel said.
Transportation will be available from the search center to City Hall, and carpooling is encouraged. Anyone who needs a ride from the search center should be there by 7:30 p.m.
Sierra, 15, has been missing since March 16, when police say she was kidnapped on the way to her school bus stop near Palm and Dougherty avenues, and likely later murdered. Sierra was a sophomore at Sobrato High School at the time of her disappearance.
Koziel, 33, will fly out from Chicago to host the vigil. After hearing about Sierra’s case in the news, Koziel was moved enough to fly to Morgan Hill in June to participate in the volunteer search efforts for about a week.
Koziel does not know Sierra and did not have any connection to her family before hearing about the case, but she was inspired to react out of a need to help a hurting family, and to do what she can to prevent similar future incidents.
“It’s an epidemic - every day girls are going missing,” said Koziel, a human resources professional. “The laws protect the perpetrator, and not the victims. I just said I have to do something, and take a stand.”
She added on her first trip to Morgan Hill in June she “made a whole new family” among the volunteers she worked with.
“It was a great experience,” Koziel said.
All funds raised at the vigil will go to the Sierra LaMar Search Fund.
Organizers will start the vigil by playing some of Sierra’s favorite songs over a PA system, and some people will speak before the vigil moves into the courtyard adjacent to City Hall, Koziel said.
Every attendee will be asked to place their luminary on the ground “until we have filled the entire court with light,” Koziel said.
For more information about Wednesday’s vigil, go to [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] or by sending an email to [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.].

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Normal Sheriff: Fingerprint Connects Suspect to Sierra LaMar

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Sep 06, 2012 4:33 am

by Josh Koehn on Sep 05, 2012

Sierra LaMar, 16, disappeared on her way to school in Morgan Hill in March. While she has still not been found, Sheriff Laurie Smith said Tuesday that a fingerprint on the suspect's car helped crack the case.
During an interview Tuesday, Sheriff Laurie Smith—whose office is pushing for control of the San Jose Police Department’s $4.1 million fingerprint program—revealed new details about the case involving the suspected kidnapping and murder of 16-year-old Sierra LaMar.

Smith said the most notable achievement of the Sheriff’s Office fingerprint division came earlier this year, when her team matched a fingerprint from LaMar to a print found on the car of her suspected kidnapper and killer, Antolin Garcia-Torres.

“We hit a fingerprint on the Sierra LaMar case,” Smith said, “and because I’m just so sensitive about that case I came down and I said, ‘Are you sure?’ And they looked at me like I was crazy. You know, yes, it’s an identification.”

That evidence has not previously been revealed in documents or released to the media as Garcia-Torres

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Normal Update: Body found in Aromas; sheriff's have few details/Sheriff's: Premature to speculate if it's a missing person like Sierra LaMar

Post by Wrapitup on Sat Sep 08, 2012 11:03 am

Posted: Friday, September 7, 2012 3:45 pm | Updated: 4:51 pm, Fri Sep 7, 2012.

by Carly Gelsinger Staff Writer

Authorities discovered a body Friday morning near Aromas, but have yet to confirm details about the victim.
While authorities do not appear to have much confirmed at this point, Santa Clara County Sgt. Jose Cardoza said it is premature to speculate about the possibility it could be a missing person such as Sierra LaMar, the 15-year-old Morgan Hill teen who went missing March 16.
Witnesses passing by in the area called 911 to report seeing what they believed was a body off Cannon Road. San Benito County sheriff’s deputies responded and immediately requested outside help, said Sgt. Jose Cardoza with the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office, which is assisting a short-staffed San Benito County department on the case with a crime scene investigation unit and media communication.
Cardoza said he could not confirm whether the victim was a male or female, or an estimated age. He also did not have information on a condition, such as the length of time the body may have been there. He said part of Cannon Road was considered a crime scene and has been blocked off to traffic as investigators continue their work.
Santa Clara County sheriff's deputies were called in because the San Benito sheriff's department is short staffed, officials said.
Santa Clara County sheriff’s investigators have charged Antolin Garcia-Torres in the kidnapping and murder of Sierra LaMar, even though her body has not been found.

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Normal Re: Missing 15 Year Old Sierra Lamar ~ Her Cell Phone & A Bag With Her Clothes Found~ Suspect Antolin Garcia-Torres Arrested & Charged With Kidnapping & Murder~ Her Remains Have Not Been Found

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